Friday 19 April 2024

Warhammer 9th Edition Rulebook 2.3 (beta) out now!

This is a pretty big one, mainly because I had to redo the book and remove all non-rules text in order to make it "GW Legal" so to speak. This means the book is a bit shorter than before as a result, but also a bit quicker to get to the actually important stuff. Change-wise, the patch list looks pretty long, but it's mostly clarifications, QoL-improvements and minor balance changes.

One thing that has seen some big changes though are the Lores of Magic. Magic in WAP is widely considered a big improvement on 8th edition rules, but the lores themselves were still not very well balanced as I had left them mostly untouched. Another major criticism is magic simply being too powerful. This was partially due to boosted spells being automatically cast instead of requiring declaration before-hand (which has been fixed with this update), but even with that, magic would still pretty much be on an 8th ed level. In order to get away from the whole "throw as much dice as possible at a single spell and hope it goes through without exploding your wizard", I've chosen remove the boosted version of [most of] the spells, thus encouraging casters to diversify their spell casting more. I am considering a Storm of Magic-like expansion later on with boosted spells for people who want more powerful options, especially in bigger games. Boosted spells might also remain in part for some of the army book lores.

Other changes include limiting the amount of dice each Wizard level can use per spell by 1, but instead they get +1 spell so you have more versatility. Channelling has been changed to only give +1 dice per Wizard (like 8th ed), but more powerful Wizards can channel dice easier than weaker ones. It's no longer easier to channel power dice than dispel dice, but the casting player will have more dice than the dispeller through some Winds of Magic rolls compared to earlier.

As well as this, each lore has been given 6+ new spells based on previous editions and WFRP, giving each lore a lot more options. Rather than having the spells be pointlessly numbered 1-6, there are now 3 spells available for every Wizard level (with more powerful Wizards having access to the lower levels as before). The old spells have been rebalanced with changes to damage, casting difficulty and range to make the worst spells better and the best spells worse, so that all spells and lores should be much closer to each other in terms of power while still retaining their identities.

A big thanks to those community members that have been helping out with giving constructive feedback on how to better balance the spells for playtesting! The book will be in beta form for at least a month to gather feedback on bugs and such, but especially to hear how the updated magic system fares. Happy gaming, and many thanks to my Patreons for your support!


Patch notes:

  • Added section on "take-backs" and "forgotten rules".
  • Reinforcements may march in the turn they enter the battlefield.
  • Clarified AoE spells only work while the unit is within range of the caster.
  • Unless specified, each Wizard knows a number of spells equal to one plus their Wizard level.
  • Spells are no longer numbered 1-6, but instead numbered by Wizard Level (1-4). Wizards may only choose spells of their own Level or lower.
  • Included rules for Conveyance and Summoning spells.
  • Added in wording that describes how magical vortexes move under Spell Types rather than every individual spell.
  • Roll D6 per 1000 points played to determine the strength of the Winds of Magic.
  • The dispel pool: The dispelling player gets a number of dispel dice equal to half of the roll of the two Winds of Magic dice (rounded up).
  • Channelling Dice: Wizards can only channel 1 dice each. The likely success of dice channelling is dependent on the Wizard Level.
  • The number of dice each Wizard can use to cast each spell is equal to their Wizard Level plus 1.
  • Overcast Spells: If a player wishes to cast the overcast version of a spell, this needs to be stated before rolling the dice. Otherwise, a Wizard is assumed to be casting the standard version of the spell.
  • Wizards must be within 24" of the enemy Wizard or target area of the spell in order to attempt to dispel a spell.
  • You may use a maximum of two dice when casting bounds spells from items (including the free dice mentioned above), and three dice when casting innate bound spells.
  • Added rules for improved hitting chances with BS6+.
  • If the front rank model is in base contact with two or more enemies with different profiles, the attacking player can only direct the supporting attacks against normal rank and file models in the unit. This means they cannot target specific models like characters, handlers or other unique models, unless those are the only options available.
  • A unit is disrupted if an enemy is attacking it in the flank or rear, and that enemy unit has a Unit Strength equal to half or more than the former unit.
  • Animated Constructs do not have Immunity (Poisoned Attacks).
  • Ponderous: Weapons with this special rule suffer an additional -1 To Hit penalty if they move and shoot in the same turn.
  • Dodge works on mounted models.
  • Clarified Frenzied units do not need to overrun.
  • Flying units containing two or more models follow the following rules for Skirmishers: Skirmish Formation, Skirmishers & Charging, Free Reform, Light Troops.
  • Flyers may use their Fly Move when fleeing/pursuing.
  • Clarified that Ignores Armour saves only work on close combat attacks unless specified.
  • Inspiring Presence is a special rule. This rule is cumulative with other sources of Inspiring Presence. If the model has a Line of Sight value of 4 or more, then the range of their Inspiring Presence rule is increased by 6.
  • Hold Your Ground is a special rule. This rule is cumulative with other sources of Hold Your Ground. If the model has a Line of Sight value of 4 or more, then the range of their Inspiring Presence rule is increased by 6.
  • Models with Immunity (Killing Blow) treat Heroic Killing Blow as normal Killing Blow.
  • Removed Large Target.
  • Added Loner: A Character with this special rule cannot be your Army General and cannot join a unit without this special rule. A unit with this special rule cannot be joined by a Character without this special rule.
  • A Stomp has the Always Strikes Last special rule and inflicts a number of automatic hits as indicated in the brackets.
  • Strength Bonus renamed to Mighty Blow.
  • If a Terror-causing creature declares a charge, the target unit must immediately take a Psychology test.
  • Volley Fire: Weapons with this rule allow the unit to fire with all ranks within range in the Shooting Phase rather than just the first two. However, if they do so, all models in the third and subsequent ranks suffer -1 To Hit. A unit cannot Volley Fire if the target is within half the weapon's maximum range.
  • Moved Deployment and Formation special rules to the end of the Special Rules section so they can all be found in one place.
  • Added Large Infantry as a new Troop Type. Large Infantry only require 4 models for a complete rank, and may make up to two supporting attacks.
  • Monstrous Infantry have US2, and may make up to two supporting attacks.
  • Monstrous Cavalry have US3, and may make up to two supporting attacks from the mount.
  • Added clarification on "complete ranks".
  • Added in rules for Ranks and Supporting Attacks for Swarms. Swarms require to be 3 wide, and may make up to 5 supporting attacks.
  • Added Monstrous Creature as a new Troop Type. Monstrous Creatures have Stomp (D3), Swiftstride, Terror, Unit Strength 4 and LoS 3.
  • Monsters have a Unit Strength of double their original starting number of Wounds. Ridden Monsters add the number of riders to their Unit Strength.
  • Shrines have a default Line of Sight value of 1.
  • Added additional allowed base sizes.
  • Spear (Mounted) renamed to Light Lance.
  • Lance renamed to Heavy Lance.
  • Added in blunderbusses as a new weapon.
  • Added in greatbows as a new weapon.
  • Infantry armed with bucklers get an additional +1 to their armour save against missile attacks to their front.
  • Renamed Champions to Leaders. They have the same stats as the rest of their unit. Points costs are planned to be revised for Command Groups in general so they are cheaper for weaker troops.
  • A Leadership test is required for a unit to make a Swift Reform. Leaders may re-roll failed rolls.
  • Moved the rules for Cannons, Stone Throwers, Bolt Throwers, and Fire Throwers to the Weapons & Armour section.
  • Bolts from Bolt Throwers do not stop if they fail to kill a model.
  • Shots from Cannons do not stop if they fail to kill a model.
  • Stone Throwers have a range of 12-48", Strength 4(8) and the Multiple Wounds (D3) special rule.
  • Added rules for Organ Guns, Mortars and Rocket Launchers.
  • Leaving a Unit: If the Character itself cannot move, the unit may choose to leave them behind. Mark the spot where the character is and move the unit as normal, then place the character back in that spot. If the unit cannot move far ahead of the character model for any reason, it cannot leave the character behind.
  • Refusing a Challenge: If no enemy Character steps forward to meet the challenge, one of them may be chosen to retire. Furthermore, the model's Leadership cannot be used for any Leadership tests that take place that turn, nor can any other bonuses from special rules or magic items.
  • Rules for the General and Battle Standard Bearer moved to the Choosing Your Army chapter.
  • Anvil of Vaul is a Mystical Monument.
  • Sorcerous Portal casts a magic missile with a 12" range that causes D6 Strength 4 Hits.
  • Added rules for the following terrain pieces: Bad Moon Loonshrine, Feculent Gnarlmaw, Herdstone, Gnawhole, Balewind Vortex, Dreadfire Portal, Dreadstone Blight, Eternity Stair, Garden of Morr, Magewrath Throne.
  • A building has a Line of Sight value of 4 for each floor it has. Models add +4 to their Line of Sight value for every floor they are on above the first one.
  • You are no longer required to have a Lord be the Army General.
  • Spells are chosen after you know which army you will be facing, but before rolling to choose sides to deploy on.
  • Dawnstone is "Model on foot only".
  • Wizards that are Lords can take up to two Arcane Items.
  • New Magic Items: Dragon Slaying Sword, Pidgeon Plucker Pendant, Headsman’s Axe, Spelleater Axe, Burning Blade, Bedazzling Helm, Shield of the Warrior True, Banner of Iron Resolve, Potion of Foolhardiness, Arcane Familiar.
  • Fencer's Blades cost 30 pts.
  • Bone Blade costs 15 pts.
  • Relic Sword costs 10 pts.
  • Armour of Resilience cost 25 pts.
  • Gambler's Armour cost 15 pts.
  • Power Familiar costs 25 pts.
  • Channelling Staff costs 10 pts.
  • Trickster's Shard cost 10 pts.
  • Earthing Rod: If the wizard suffers a miscast, they do not add the number of power dice used to the result.
  • Healing Potion costs 15 pts.
  • Banner of Valour costs 15 pts.
  • Dread Banner costs 20 pts.
  • Banner of Defiance costs 40 pts.
  • Banner of Wailing costs 40 pts.
  • Ranger's Standard costs 10 pts.
  • Banner of Swiftness costs 25 pts.
  • Banner of the Eternal Flame: A unit with this magic standard gains the Magical Attacks and Flaming Attacks special rules.
  • Banner of Duty: A unit with this magic standard automatically pass any Rally tests.
  • Scarecrow Banner: A unit with this magic standard causes Terror in models with the Fly special rule.
  • Removed boosted versions of all spells. Boosted versions might return in a Storm of Magic-like expansion.
  • Introduced 6+ new spells for each lore.
  • Lots of rebalances of most spells, ranging from changing casting values and ranges to complete rewrites that fixes fundamental issues with the previous version.

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